Roby and Black discuss attracting GOP women at Ripon meeting

Four members of the Republican Women’s Policy Committee, including Reps. Martha Roby (R-Ala.) and Diane Black (R-Tenn.), spoke on Oct. 3 at a Ripon Society breakfast meeting.

The speakers talked about the experience of running for office and the committee’s goal of recruiting more women to run for office as Republicans.

Roby, who was elected to the House in 2012, told the audience what she says to prospective candidates about running for office.

“What I tell young ladies is that you don’t have to wait your turn,” Roby said. “You don’t have to sit down and take a number and wait until somebody else tells you it’s your turn.”

She said another consideration is the balance between holding an elected office and being a mother.

“You don’t have to choose,” she said. “You can do both, and it’s hard. You’ve got to have a good support network – here and back home. You’ve got to have people that will help you. Hillary Clinton got it right when she said it takes a village. But choose your village. Make sure you’ve got people around you that you want.”

Black, a cofounding member of RWPC, talked about the importance of being selective when choosing qualified candidates to run for office.

“We want to ask the right women to come and join us to fight on the hill,” Black said. “But the other thing we are doing is not giving up when we find a good woman who says the time is just not right.”

The breakfast meeting was the third discussion in recent years that focused on increasing the number of women who run for office and play a leadership role in the Republican Party.